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Gujarat: SC judge visits Jagannath temple, says High Court order is in public interest

“The high court order is in public interest. Between public interest and faith, public interest is more important. Faith is certainly there, but we also have to take care of the public interest and public simultaneously," Justice Shah said.

By: Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Published: June 24, 2020 5:49:47 am
Jagannath temple, Gujarat HC, Ahmedabad news, Gujarat news, indian express news Chariots brought inside Lord Jagannath Temple at Jamalpur in Ahmedabad on Tuesday after the Gujarat High Court declined permission for the procession. (Photo: Javed Raja)

Supreme Court judge Justice MR Shah visited the Jagannath temple near Jamalpur Darwaja in Ahmedabad on Tuesday and said that the Gujarat High Court order refusing to allow Rath Yatra procession in Ahmedabad is in public interest.

“The high court order is in public interest. Between public interest and faith, public interest is more important. Faith is certainly there, but we also have to take care of the public interest and public simultaneously. According to me it (HC order staying the procession) is perfect…,” Justice Shah said, speaking to local TV journalists on the temple premises.

However when asked further comparing the high court’s order to that of the Supreme Court where a three-judge bench allowed the procession in Puri, Odisha, subject to restrictions and conditions, Justice Shah said, “There is a difference in comparison between Jagannath Puri and Ahmedabad. There is curfew imposed there. And here, the application was made on the last day, there it was done prior.”

When asked if an earlier application at the Gujarat High Court may have resulted in a different decision, Justice Shah said he would not know and could not comment on the same.

VHP slams state govt

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad Gujarat Faction Tuesday said that “Hindus will never forgive the current BJP government for their lack of determination” after the Lord Jagannath Rath Yatra was cancelled for the first time in 143 years. In a statement issued by VHP Gujarat president Dilip Trivedi, the organisation criticized the state government for its inaction over the issue of Rath Yatra and putting the onus on Gujarat High Court to take a decision on it.

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